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Lauren Castillo grew up Catholic and her father was even the deacon of her church. But then in Castillo’s senior year of college, her pro-life philosophy was put to a real-life test when she had an unplanned pregnancy.

“That was a moment I had to say to myself, ‘now you have to walk your talk,’” Castillo said. “It truly rocked my world and made me redefine my relationship with God.”

Lauren’s due date was also her graduation date for her double major, honors program, but God had another plan and her son was born five-and-a-half-weeks premature. This challenge came with a whole new set of barriers.

Castillo, who had done homework while in labor, delivered on a Thursday and was back in class the following week. The student mom made it through that challenging time in her life with the grace of God.

Castillo never regretted her decision to give her son life and her unplanned and difficult pregnancy strengthened her family and their faith. It also reinvigorated her pro-life support and her passion to help women who find themselves facing an unplanned pregnancy.

The student mom made it through that challenging time in her life with the grace of God. She went through marriage preparations classes with the Archdiocese of Denver and married her son’s father. Her seven-year-old son now has three younger siblings — the most recent is only a few weeks old.

Now, Castillo works with 1,250 college and high school campuses — 41 in Colorado— to let expectant moms know: “there are people who will care for you and your baby and there are many organizations and resources that exist to help.”

There’s an unfortunate narrative out there that the pro-life community only cares about the unborn child and it’s just not true, said Castillo, Development Director of Students for Life. We see the mom and baby as equal humans needing our help and support, she added.

“The moms need to know there are people and groups who will love them, they need to know they are still loved,” Castillo said. “There is no question these women would be met with love and the help they need.”

That’s why this mom, who faced her own unplanned pregnancy is pleading for voters to vote yes on Colorado’s Prop 115 this November.

“Our mission is to make these supportive services known. There should never be reason that seeking late-term abortions is the answer,” Castillo said. “Our moms and pre-born babies deserve better. Our state should do better.”

Respect Life ministries and programs supporting moms, like Castillo, and their unplanned pregnancies are supported by the Archbishop’s Catholic Appeal.

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